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Innovative roof truss design saves time and money for Cheshire residential project

28th September 2023

Crendon Timber Engineering Ltd was approached to consult on a residential project for three exclusive homes in Cheshire. The customer had already received superstructure designs from a structural consultancy involving a steel portal frame-type construction with loose-cut timber roofs. However, the dwellings had highly complex roofscapes with intersecting high and low-pitch surfaces, hip ends, valleys, pediments, and dormers. The project required high-vaulted areas inside the building to allow for feature ceilings in several locations. The complexity of the roof truss designs required for the project was similar to commercial-level design work.

The use of trussed rafters

To tackle this challenge, Andy Kennedy designed the roofs using trussed rafters where possible, removing as much of the steel beams as possible from the build. The aim was to provide a complete solution that allowed the site teams to have a more efficient installation while maintaining the requirements of the structure’s design.

Removal of 95% of roof-level steelwork saves £10,000 per plot

Andy’s design provided a complete solution that met all the key requirements of the customer’s build and removed the need for 95% of the roof-level steelwork. The only remaining steel beams required for the design were at the ceiling level. This resulted in a direct saving of approximately £10k per plot once the superstructure was at the wall plate level. The project could be handed over to carpenters to erect the roof structure without requiring crossover back to steelwork contractors.

The design also incorporated several high-level parallel trusses and raised-tie mono-pitch trusses to form the demanding high-vaulted feature ceilings among many other complex design sections and intricate framing areas.

The design was required to handle the wind loads from the superstructure’s gable walls and wind posts. These details were included in the final design package for site teams. Throughout the process, the company consulted with the customer’s technical team for comments and approvals, supplying them with files at every stage, allowing for a streamlined and efficient approval process.

The company’s solution provided the customer with a cost-efficient and efficient installation process while maintaining the demanding architectural designs of the dwellings. The successful collaboration between Crendon Timber Engineering Ltd and the customer’s technical team resulted in a stunning residential project with complex roofscapes that met the highest design and construction standards.

Here’s what the judges had to say about Andy’s design:

The project description was very comprehensive, giving clear information on how the design brief was met. It showed a complex roofscape requiring high vaulted areas inside the building.

“The end product and project savings were a credit to the designer’s ingenuity. An inspirational roofscape which illustrates that timber products can deliver the goods”.

About Andy:

Andy Kennedy is a 38-year-old designer for Crendon Timber Engineering Ltd with over two decades of experience in the roof truss industry. He joined the industry at the age of 15 and has been working his way up ever since. He is currently working as the National Key Account Design Team Manager.

Andy started his career in the industry as a shop floor apprentice; most of his time, he was working on saws or assisting in manufacturing jigs. In 2004, when the company transitioned from MS-DOS to Windows-based software, the owner asked him to become a designer. And as they say, the rest is history!

Andy enjoys playing the Euphonium with the World Famous Grimethorpe Colliery Brass Band and golf in his free time. His exceptional design work has recently earned him the highly commended Residential Project of the Year award from the Trussed Rafter Association.

For Andy, the most satisfying aspect of his award-winning project was replacing the previously specified large amounts of steelwork at the roof level with a complex yet robust system of roof trusses, resulting in significant savings for the customer.

Andy has always been design-oriented. He studied graphic design at GCSE and achieved a grade of A. Having worked on the shop floor, he was always inquisitive about how all the different truss profiles in a project come together on-site to form a roof and how such structural integrity could be achieved from such small timber sections. When he was given the opportunity for this to be his day job, he jumped at the chance.


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